Digital Asset Management (DAM) systems are business software that store, classify and distribute photos, videos and other multimedia content. They manage these organizations digital assets for specific purposes, such as ensuring brand identity consistency or accelerating content production for advertising campaigns.
A DAM therefore allows you to set up a shared repository and classify digital assets with descriptive terms and metadata, to facilitate their search and retrieval.
Systems of this type offer APIs that ensure their integration with related services, as well as automating the creation and distribution of resources across various multi-channel access points. They also protect access to resources by granting access only to people with the appropriate rights to create, read, modify, or delete items.
What are the benefits of DAM?
Guarantee a single source of truth. A DAM is more than just a network sharing tool for multimedia files (EFSS, FTP or NAS). A DAM enables the reuse of digital assets and acts as a filing system.
Marketers and their partners no longer have to search through different online collections or arrange custom photo shoots for their specific mediums. Indeed, all players in marketing and communications can now incorporate photos and videos from a single centralized DAM into their projects, with the confidence that the content has been validated by a manager from creation to distribution and that it is up to date and consistent with the identity of the brand.
Simplify teamwork. The advertising campaigns are carried out by a team of creatives made up of, among others, designers, photographers, videographers or publishers responsible for producing experiences around the brand.
A DAM offers digital services optimized for the work of creative teams, from a shared repository. It also helps reduce the time designers and editors waste on administrative tasks (searching for files or switching from one production step to another).
Monetize the media supply chain. Digital assets have commercial value, including licensing rights for stock photos, branding associated with video images and sounds, or essential information on product labels. Companies spend a lot of time and effort in preserving their brand identity, image and valuable content.
A DAM system helps track the use of digital assets in organizations. This is a critical aspect of digital rights management: determining whether assets are licensed for use in certain geographic areas, knowing what rights are required, and knowing who to pay them to. It’s also important to track customer and audience engagement, including measuring the popularity of content in different scenarios, which helps marketers identify the optimal assets to get their message across. It is also used to generate valuable metrics and insights for creating digital experiences.
What are the challenges of implementing a DAM?
Managing digital assets requires an upfront investment of time and resources, among other disadvantages.
Categories and metadata. A DAM associates labels (tagging) with resources according to different categories. These can be descriptions, such as naming objects in images or identifying scenes in video clips. Other tags provide context, such as date, time, and location of photos, or natural language variants and video display resolutions.
To identify relevant categories and metadata, DAM relies on a well-defined data architecture. Agile organizations must continually refine and update these categories as their business evolves.
Business process. Digital Asset Management aims to structure how users create and use digital assets within an organization. However, many activities related to creation and marketing are often impromptu and aim to quickly resolve operational blocks.
Managers will then need to evaluate creative assets and identify bottlenecks where a DAM can generate a substantial return on investment. They will then have to redefine processes and manage operational change to ensure that creative and operational teams adapt to new ways of working.
Digital experiences. Digital assets are increasingly coming into play in creating online experiences. For example, partner marketing teams need personalized videos to stay competitive and relevant. The functionality of a DAM must adapt to the rapidly changing needs of the company for the management of its multimedia contents and the production of suitable digital experiences.
On the other hand, IT teams need to integrate DAM capabilities into their architectures and manage the technical risks associated with integrating assets into their business processes.
Key points to remember about DAM
DAMs provide essential functionality for digital transformation initiatives in which images, video and other types of multimedia content play a crucial role in business success.
However, regardless of whether DAM software is a dedicated platform or its functionality is integrated into a digital experience platform, organizations must prepare for the challenges that come with its adoption.